Saturday, July 2, 2011

Binnie flack tries to rewrite history of multi-millionaire’s epic fail

September 21, 2010 by ShawnMillerick  
Filed under HP_Featured, News & Politics

Canada’s National Post published a heartfelt commentary by Canadian “conservative” political operative and once-upon-a-time Binnie consultant Gerry Nicholls offering a defense of his former boss and third-place finisher in the NH Senate primary.

Nicholls has clearly been watching a lot of CNN this week, because he’s hopped aboard the anti-Tea Party train and is attributing Binnie’s resounding loss to a right wing, social conservative movement “obsessed” with defeating “social moderate[s]” like Binnie. He accuses the Union Leader and Sarah Palin of engaging in a vast, right wing conspiracy to bring down a genuine, self-made guy just trying to live the American dream.

How about a simpler explanation? Maybe, in a year where the electorate is rejecting smooth, slick politician types across the board, Binnie was the poster child for smooth, slick politician types. Yes, he had the advantage of being a technical “outsider,” but Binnie seemed determined to make up for that by running the most stereotypically sleazy campaign of anyone in the race. There was the shady business history, and the even shadier web of lies he told to explain away the relocation of his plastics factory from the US to Mexico. Then the FEC complaint filed against Kelly Ayotte. Then, in mid-August, came a pair of cookie-cutter anti-Ayotte ads using the tried-and-true tactic of tear-jerking testimonials from “real people” designed to play on voters’ sympathy. Trouble was, New Hampshire voters have seen all the slick tricks before, and this year they weren’t buying.

Had he not fallen prey to these worn-out and transparent campaign tactics, Binnie could conceivably have been in Ovide Lamontagne’s place on primary night. Ayotte won because she had the edge all along, and was probably able to siphon off a significant amount of former Binnie voters who thought Ovide was too conservative. Ovide leapfrogged over Binnie because he actually ran a genuine, refreshing campaign in which he was unflinchingly honest and refused to go negative. It’s pretty rich to blame Binnie’s loss on fire-breathing social conservatives, when Ayotte was often the target of RINO accusations herself. It’s also hard to buy Nicholls’ assertion that Binnie’s loss has weekend the GOP, since Ayotte was polling better against Hodes all along.

Maybe the tactics Nicholls employed during Binnie’s campaign are groundbreaking and innovative in Canadian politics. I don’t know. But I do know that a flawed, untrustworthy candidate and a tired campaign strategy aren’t a winning combination, and New Hampshire voters know it too.

Speak Your Mind

Tell us what you're thinking...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!

You must be logged in to post a comment.